Foster dog looking lovingly up at person petting them
Foster dog looking lovingly up at person petting them

10 Reasons to Foster a Dog

10 reasons you should defnitely foster a dog. 

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Featured Photo Mary Swift/Shutterstock

Fostering a dog is a life changing experience for both you and the rescue dog. By opening up your home, you act as an important and unforgettable stepping stone in the rescue dog’s journey to their forever family.

Here, Urban Tails Animal Rescue shares 10 excellent reasons why you should consider fostering a dog:


1. You’ll literally be saving a dog’s life.

Fostering a dog directly saves a life by providing a temporary home and freeing up space in shelters and rescue organizations for other dogs in need. Without fosters, many organizations cannot continue to rescue dogs.

2. It’s FREE.

Fostering costs you $0. The rescue will provide you with all of the supplies and food you need for your foster dog. Vet visits are paid for by the rescue too! You may be asked to drive your foster dog to and from any appointments, however, so you should be ready to volunteer some of your time for this.

Little dog being walked in the park on a sunny day

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3. Emotional fulfillment and physical health.

The joy and gratification of knowing you’ve made a positive difference in the life of a dog can be incredibly fulfilling. You’ll also get to walk with your foster dog, play and adventure, making it a wonderful physical experience as well.

4. Companionship.

This one goes without saying! You’ll receive companionship and unconditional love from a foster dog during their foster period. This can be incredibly beneficial to your mental health.

5. Individualized care.

Fostering allows you to give individualized attention to meet a dog’s specific training and medical needs. Working closely with your foster can help to provide valuable insight about their behaviour, preferences and needs which helps support the rescue in finding the perfect forever home.

6. Your commitment is only temporary. 

Fostering provides flexibility without the commitment of a lifelong responsibility. You can choose to foster back-to-back or return to fostering after taking a break.

Dog smiling sitting in a sunny field

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7. You save more than one life.

When you foster, you not only help save the life of the dog you bring in, but you save the life of the dog the rescue can take in their place. The act of fostering produces a butterfly effect in the welfare of animals and the systems that support them.

8. Test drive for adoption.

Fostering allows you to assess if a particular dog is a good fit for your lifestyle and assess your readiness before committing to adoption. It’s a great way to make realistic decisions about caring for a dog before you make the decision to bring a new dog home for life.

9. Fostering gets the whole family involved!

If you have children, opening your home to a foster dog can teach children about compassion, responsibility, and empathy towards animals. It also encourages you to get outdoors, stay active and play together. Alternatively, if you have roommates or a partner in the household, fostering is a rewarding team effort that you contribute to together.

Happy family in yard playing with dog

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10. Social Networking and Community Building.

The commitment to fostering also comes with opportunities to connect with like-minded individuals who share a passion for animal welfare and create a supportive community. You meet some really great lifelong friends through fostering and helping in the rescue community!


The most important thing to keep in mind is that fostering a dog is a significant responsibility that involves a commitment of time, resources and energy to support ongoing care. It is also an incredibly meaningful, soul-satisfying and gratifying experience for everyone involved.

If you’re interested in learning more about the Fostering process, you can read more here:

Be sure to check in with any organization you choose to foster with about their policies and guidelines for fostering, as it varies.

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